The Resource Availability table on the General tab of the Resource Information dialog box cant track the Available From date and the Available To date-a start and finish date for a resource if it differs from the Project Start or Finish Date. By default, the Start and Finish date of the project is designated by NA in the Available From and Available To fields.
Leave NA In the field to indicate that the resource is available from the Start Date or until the Finish Date of the project. If the resource is available from the start of the project but not until the end. leave NA in the Available From field. If a resource can’t start at the beginning of a project but is available to the end of the project after starting. leave NA in the Available To field. Enter specific dates that relate only to the resource, not to the proposed start or finish date for the project. This prevents problems from occurring if the project’s start/finish date changes the dates you entered would no longer correspond to the current start or finish date.
To enter specific dates that a resource is available, follow these steps:
1. Select the Available From field and choose a start date from the drop-down calendar if the resource’s start date does not correspond to the project’s start date.
2. Select the Available To field and choose an end date from the drop-down calendar if the resource’s finish date does not correspond to the project’s finish date.
3. Click to adjust the Max Units available to work on a project, if appropriate.
Contouring Resource Availability With Project 2000, one resource can have several different availability periods during the course of a project and differing amounts of availability t- fax Units) during each period. Let’s say Lisa is a marketing person who is going to work on the project to help conduct the marketing analysis and prepare marketing materials. When you asked Lisa if she could work on the project, she told you that she has only two weeks of full-time availability at the start of the project and then she can only offer one day a week for the duration. You can enter Lisa’s availability, as shown in Figure 9.3. Later, when you assign Lisa to tasks, Project calculates the schedule for the tasks assigned to her, based on her availability at the proposed start date for the task. If you schedule Lisa at 100% when she’s only available 20% (one day a week), Project will indicate that Lisa is overall ocated.
Changing the Working Time for a Resource
When rou assign a resource to a task, Microsoft Project uses the resource calendar information to calculate the work for that resource. You must have an accurate working calendar in order for Project to accurately schedule work. When you create a resource, Project assi~s the default working calendar to the resource. The Change Working Time dialog box is discussed in detail in “Defining the Project Calendar” in Chapter 6. In this section, we’ll review some of the basics and discuss how to make changes to the working calendar for a specific resource.
You can customize the working calendar for a specific resource on the Working Time tab of the Resource Information dialog box, shown in Figure 9.4, or by selecting the resource in any resource view and choosing Tools > Change Working Time.
If you open the Working Time calendar from the Resource Information dialog box, you have access only to the calendar for the specific resource that you have open. You .can make changes to the resource calendar and you can assign a different base calendar to the resource, but you cannot make any changes to the base calendar then you open the calendar from the Tools menu, you have access to all the base and resource calendars. Select the calendar you are interested in reviewing from the For drop-down list. Table 9.3 describes where to access a calendar to make changes to it.As a review of the information from Chapter 6, Microsoft Project includes three base calendars: tangled Base calendar, shown in Figure 9.5, has a standard work day and work week of Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m, to 5:00 p.m, with a break from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. 24 Hours Base calendar, shown -n Figure 9.6, runs around the clock from Sunday through Saturday, 12:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. This calendar is typically assigned to non-human resources such as a press that runs 24 hours a day, or to a resource group such as Security that covers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
The base calendar that is set as the project default in the Project lnformation dialog box, (Project Information), shown in Figure 9.8, is designated as the default calendar.
Make any changes that affect multiple resources in the default project base calendar before editing the calendar for individual resources, Refer to Chapter 6 for more about making changes to the base calendar and creating custom calendars.
Setting Work Times for Resources Whether you access a resource’s calendar from the Tools menu or from the Resource Information dialog box, you can use the resource’s calendar to enter specific working and nonworking times for the resource. Because it is .based on a base calendar, the resource calendar shares the times reflected there. However, the resource may have different work hours, planned days off, or limited availability during the project schedule. Although you can adjust for a resource who is not available on a full-time basis through the assignment of Max Units, you can also adjust their calendar to reflect the available hours and leave the Max Units at 100% (100% of the total available hours reflected in the resource’s calendar).
Assigning Calendars to Resources If you want to assign a different base calendar (for example, the Night Shift calendar) to a resource, open the Resource Information dialog box and click the Working Time tab. Select a n~w calendar from the Base calendar drop-down list, shown in Figure 9.9.
The resource now inherits all of the characteristics of the new base calendar; that is, working and nonworking time, including specified days off. Making Changes to the Resource Calendar To change the working times for any of the dates, you must first select the dates you want to change. Table 9.4 reviews the methods for selecting dates.
Project shades the date in the Calendar and underlines it to indicate that it deviates from the default calendar. To change the working hours of a day of the week (for example, all Fridays), select the day by clicking the Day header to select the entire column and click the Nondefault working time option. Enter the scheduled working time in the From and To fields, as shown in Figure 9.10. Pressing Tab to move between the To and From fields automatically selects the contents.
Entering Cost Information
Although Microsoft is very clear about the fact that Project 2000 is not a cost-accounting system, you can still assign and track costs to make projections about project costs and monitor a project’s budget. (These are managerial accounting rather than cost accounting functions, after all.) On the Costs tab of the Resource Information dialog box, shown ‘in Figure 9.11, you can record up to five different rates for a selected resource that you can then assign to different tasks. For example, if you have a resource called Technical Writers and the three writers you use have different rates, you can enter each rate separately and still maintain and assign Technical Writers as one resource.
In addition to entering separate rate schedules, you can enter up to twenty-five changes from the established rate in each schedule to account for price changes in material resources and pay-rate changes in work resources. Each of these rates includes an Effective Date, a Standard Rate, an Overtime Rate, and a Per Use Cost.
To enter costs for a resource, follow these steps:
1. Open the Resource Information dialog box and click the Costs tab.
2. If the Effective Date of the cost is the same as the project start date, do not enter an effective date. Otherwise, in Table A, type in a date or click the drop-down arrow [n the field and select a date from the calendar.
3. Enter the Standard Rate. For work resources, Project assumes S per hour (S4S.00/h). Type in /v for year, 1m for month and I’d for day if you want to enter a different type of rate. Material resources use the Material Label you assigned the resource on the General tab in the Material Label field. For example, if you enter S3 and the Material Label is boxes, the Standard rate would be interpreted as $3 per box (S3/box).
4. Enter the Overtime Rate for work resources, even if the Overtime RaeiH·he same as the Standard Rate. If a work resource works overtime hours, any additional hours are charged at this rate.
5. Enter any additional Per Use Costs for a resource. For example, include costs for delivery or shipping and handling of material resources, or mileage fees for consultants.
6. If you know when rate increases or decreases will occur, dick in the second row, and type in or select an effective date.
Adding Notes about Resources
You can add any additional information you want to store about a r our e on the Notes tab of the Resource Information dialog box, shown in Figure 9.12.
On the Notes tab, you can do the following:
• Enter new notes about a resource
• Revise or add to existing notes
• Format notes
• Insert objects into a note
Table 9.S provides an overview of the notes toolbar.
Whether you insert the object as an icon or insert the entire object, you can link the object to the original b ‘ clicking Create from File and selecting the Link checkbox on the Insert Object dialog box, shown in Figure 9.14. Any changes made to the original object are immediately reflected in the linked object, as long as the original object and the project continue to be stored in the same file locations.
To insert an object into a note, follow these steps:
1. Click the Insert Object button on the Notes tab of the Resource Information dialog box. It may take a few seconds for the Insert Object dialog box to open.
2. Choose Create New if you want to create a new object from one of the applications listed in the Object Type list, or select Create From File if you want to attach an existing object.
3. If you chose Create New in Step 2, Project launches the application. Create the object and close the application. Project inserts the new object into the Notes tab.
4. If you chose Create From File in Step ~, enter the complete file path or click the Browse button to locate the object file. When you find it, select it and click OK. Project enters the file name in the File box.
5. Choose whether you want to link the file to the original object by clicking the Link checkbox.
6. Click the Display as Icon check box if you want to insert an icon not display the entire document. If you choose this option, you can clJtli.ge the icon by clicking the Change Icon button.
7. Click OK to insert the object. You have now completed entering all of the information in the Resource Information dialog box. Click OK to close the dialog box.
Much of the information you entered in the Resource Information dialog box is available in the Resource Sheet view. If you added a note to a resource, a Note icon appears in the Indicators column of the Resource Sheet, as Y9u can see in Figure 9.15. Point to the icon to see all or part of the note, or double-click the Notes icon to read the entire note.
Adding Resources Using Resource Pools
In addition to creating resources for each individual project, Project includes two other methods for using resources:
• Share resources being used in another project.
• Use resources from a resource pool.
Both of these options allow you to create resources once and use them again. In both cases, you are sharing resources. The only difference is whether you are sharing resources with another active project or creating a separate resource pool. A resource pool is a project file created solely for the purpose of storing resource information that is shared among multiple projects, Creating a resource pool is generally the preferred method of sharing resources because it makes it easier to manage task assignments between the resources shared in the pool. For more about resource pools, see “Creating and Using a Resource Pool”, “Sharing Resources and Tasks among Multiple Projects.”